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New Delhi, Aug 20 (UNI) Mahindra and Mahindra Ltd (M&M) today said it is considering a further increase its tractor prices in the next three months due to rising input costs, even as it expects to register ''high-single digit growth'' in the current fiscal.

''There is a very high probability that we will increase prices in the next three months,'' company Chief Operating Officer (Farm Equipment Sector) Gautam Nagwekar told reporters without divulging the quantum of increase.

The Mumbai-based company has recently increased the prices of a tractor by Rs 20,000 in two stages due to zooming prices of steel and alloy used in its manufacturing. Yesterday, the tractor manufacturer Escorts Ltd announced that it would hike the prices of its products within this month to partially pass on the input costs pressures to the consumers.

''We expect to register high single-digit growth in the domestic sales of the tractor in the current financial year,'' Mr Nagwekar said. The domestic industry grew about 11 per cent in the first quarter 2008-09.

This assumption is based on prospects of good monsoon rains and healthy farm output, he added.

The company registered 5.1 per cent dip in its sale in the last fiscal year, on account of fall in the credit line.

However, the company got cushioned by its financial arm Mahindra and Mahindra Finacial Services Ltd. ''But funding worries still remain,'' he said without revealing the sales targets.

About 90 per cent of the domestic sales of the tractors is financed though banks and non-banking financial firms.

M&M sold 99,042 tractors in the last fiscal.

UNI MP SR ND1850

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